MONEY MORAL DILEMMA: Should Scott take Charlene's ad?

Here's this week's hypothetical situation for you to cogitate on:
Should Scott take Charlene's ad?

"Scott is the owner of a successful newsagents in town. His best friend Charlene has recently found work marketing photographic portraits after months of unemployment. Her employer offers a 'free' makeover for every customer, but then charges up to £300 for a set of photographs. Scott doesn't think this is very ethical, so when she asks to put up a poster in his shop window (for free) he's in two minds. Should he compromise his friendship or his reputation?."


Click REPLY to enter the money moral maze (please remember, be polite to other MoneySavers, even if you disagree with them)

Past MMDs:


  • Pound
    Pound Posts: 2,784
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    If Scott is Charlene's friend she'll respect his opinion and won't mind him not putting an advert up otherwise what kind of friend is she?
  • Lady_E
    Lady_E Posts: 1,046 Forumite
    I think Scott should think of this as a business transaction and whilst privately having some doubts about it , he should be happy that Charlene now has some employment . I guess Scott is not an owner of a successful newsagent , by being judgemental on the type of adverts he posts in his shop.
  • MSE_Martin
    MSE_Martin Posts: 8,273
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    Money Saving Expert
    Lady E - I had meant the poster was free - so i've added that to the original post
    Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert.
    Please note, answers don't constitute financial advice, it is based on generalised journalistic research. Always ensure any decision is made with regards to your own individual circumstance.
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  • russimp
    russimp Posts: 28 Forumite
    If Scott and Charlene are good enough friends, they should be able to talk to eachother about this. S can discuss his reservations with C, not put the ad in his window but still support C in her efforts to make a living.

    And they can have a bit of a laugh about it!

    If I've made a grammatical error and you're pointing it out, I'd just like to say :T "Thanks" in advance. You big person, you ;)
  • Mics_chick
    Mics_chick Posts: 12,014 Forumite
    If his windows are full of similar sorts of ads then I don't think he can refuse his friend without upsetting her... but if he doesn't normally display this kind of thing then he can tactfully turn her down and suggest trying another newsagent with a more prominent position?

    Also I think he could accept it on either of 2 conditions - as it's free he can say that he will display it for her for 1 month only and/or if there are any complaints by his customers then he will remove it because he's willing to do her a favour in her current circumstances but not if/when it affects his business - he can say that this is a condition of anything that he displays...
    You should never call somebody else a nerd or geek because everybody (even YOU !!!) is an
    "anorak" about something whether it's trains, computers, football, shoes or celebs :p :rotfl:
  • ajaxgeezer
    ajaxgeezer Posts: 2,476 Forumite
    Sure Scott should take the ad, but if he really doesn't like it then add a disclaimer above his notice board that not all ads are necessarily endorsed by the management. He's then done his moral bit. LOL @ Scott and Charlene btw.... back when Neighbours was good :)
  • macwise
    macwise Posts: 29 Forumite
    If a friend of mine had been unemployed for a while and needed my help getting on in their new job, I would have to do it. Its only a poster in his window, how much harm can that possibly do to his business?:confused:

    It just wouldn't be fair to turn her down when she clearly needs his help but there's no harm in putting a disclaimer notice in the window too. And if he had complaints from his customers, Charlene would have to understand why he must remove it from his window. The important point is that she's trying to make it work and he needs to help her out. :A

    :o"Proper prior planning prevents pathetically poor performance":cool:
  • ajaxgeezer wrote:
    LOL @ Scott and Charlene btw.... back when Neighbours was good :)

    Thanks so much ajaxgeezer - I've been racking my brains trying to think what "LOL" means ever since I started reading the chat forums. (Doh!)

    :T :T :T :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl: :rotfl:
    :rudolf: Always skip and eat your peas :rudolf:
  • Absolutely not! Charlene probably knows these kind of misrepresentation scams are unethical too, but has decided to go for the money this time - Scott could have a chat with her, and suggest somewhere else for her ad. She'll have ditched the 'job' very soon, but Scott's reputation will stay around for a long time. If she's his best friend, she'll want the best for him too.
  • Shiggaddi
    Shiggaddi Posts: 938
    Car Insurance Carver! Cashback Cashier
    There's adverts on newsagents noticeboards all the time from scam companies offering to stuff envelopes etc.

    Amongst those adverts will be second hand TVs and cookers etc, business cards of the local plumber, and an advert for the local pantomime all with contact details, so you can contact the advertiser yourself.

    Very few people look at a newsagent noticeboard and assume that all adverts are in any way connected to the newsagent management.

    If he was really having a moral dilemma, he might start to think that selling cigarettes damages your health, and by making his sales he is helping someone to an early grave. If he has a liquor licence, do the local yobs buy from his store, then cause a nuisance in the street?

    What about the unethical ways of journalism, and invasions of privacy that help sell his tabloid newspapers?

    And if he has a lottery terminal and scratchcards, then he is now encouraging gambling.

    Then there's the magazines of skinny models that encourage young girls to become annorexic, not to mention the top shelf adult magazines he might order for customers.
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